- Hans Weber
- December 4, 2023
Student Given 12 years In Prison For Brutal Murder Of Teacher
On February 17, 2023, the Prague Metropolitan Court sentenced 19-year-old student Jaroslav Rehak to 12 years in prison and impatient treatment for the brutal murder of a 74-year-old teacher with a machete in a vocational school in Prague. The defendant had confessed to the murder and testified in court last December that the teacher had humiliated and bullied him during an examination.
Rehak was charged with premeditated murder, which carries a penalty of 12 to 20 years in prison. However, the prosecutor argued that the act should be re-qualified as the murder was committed in a very brutal way, and the defendant should face 15 to 20 years in prison, or even exceptional sentence, which ranges from 20 to 30 years, or even life imprisonment in the Czech Republic.
The court agreed with the prosecutor’s proposal to re-qualify the crime but imposed a prison term below the legal penalty level. The court panel chairman explained that it is proven that the defendant committed the act in the state of lower sanity, and according to expert opinions, Rehak had considerably lowered self-control ability when committing the murder, but his cognitive functions were preserved. The court also took other mitigating circumstances into consideration.
The defendant’s defense counsel argued that Rehak should be convicted of killing, that he committed homicide in a strong agitation caused by various circumstances. However, the court panel chairman did not accept the defense arguments.
Rehak apologized for his act in court and claimed that he did not know what he was doing and what consequences it would have as he was psychologically collapsed then. On March 31, 2022, the defendant attacked the teacher with a machete in his office on the fourth floor of the school building in Prague’s Ohradni street. The teacher succumbed to the fatal wounds on the spot, and the assailant ran away from the scene of the crime. The police arrested him in Dolni Brezany, west of Prague, later.
The prosecutor argued that the long bad relationship between the defendant and the victim escalated the feeling of wrong and frustration in the perpetrator. A day before the murder, the teacher gave Rehak the lowest mark in communication technology, and he failed in this school subject. This, coupled with the teacher’s alleged long-term humiliation and bullying of Rehak, may have triggered the violent attack.
In conclusion, the court’s verdict in this case highlights the importance of addressing and preventing bullying in schools and providing adequate support and interventions for students who may be struggling with their mental health. The tragic outcome of this case should serve as a reminder of the consequences of unchecked aggression and the need for early intervention and support for students who may be at risk of violent behavior.
Article by Prague Forum